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Chances of Getting into Top MPA and MPP programs?

bosoxfanatic245bosoxfanatic245 Posts: 7Registered User New Member
edited February 2010 in Graduate School
I'm applying to 8 very good Master in Public Administration and Master in Public Policy programs. Here are my stats:

-3.75 GPA from a top 30 university (as ranked by U.S. News and World Report)
-studied abroad junior year in Paris and took classes at prestigous French university
-770 quant GRE (87th percentile)
-670 verbal GRE (95th percentile)
-5.0 writing GRE
-intern 2 summers for congressman in district office
-intern 1 summer for a thinktank in Washington
-co-founded political group on campus
-volunteer for political campaigns during college career
-no work experience (applying directly out of undergrad)

Any thoughts about where I fit in for MPA and MPP programs? I know this year will be incredibly competitive with many unemployed applying to go back to school. All comments are greatly appreciated.
Post edited by bosoxfanatic245 on

Replies to: Chances of Getting into Top MPA and MPP programs?

  • HSTHST Posts: 186Registered User Junior Member
    For admission, I'd say your chances are very strong at most schools. My guess is that a few schools (e.g. Princeton, Columbia, probably HKS) may be difficult admits due to the shortage of work experience, but your stats are strong enough that I wouldn't rule them out either. Both your GPA and GRE scores will be above the admitted student median at any school to which you apply. You will be competitive on that basis, provided that your personal statement and letters of recommendation are adequate.

    If it is not already on your list, you might consider adding the Harris School at the University of Chicago. They seem to admit a number of academically strong students straight out of undergrad. Their program has a pretty academic bent, so a shortage of work experience is less of a handicap than at many other programs.

    One other consideration: wherever you are admitted, your lack of work experience will probably mean less scholarship support than you would receive with a few years of work under your belt. On that basis alone, you may wish to consider deferring entry to MPA/MPP programs for a few years.
  • bosoxfanatic245bosoxfanatic245 Posts: 7Registered User New Member
    I was just accepted to American University's Master in Public Administration program (ranked 14th in the nation for public affairs by U.S. News and World Report). Waiting to hear back from 7 other schools.
  • mackinawmackinaw Posts: 1,863Registered User Senior Member
    The stronger MPP programs are going to look very carefully at the quality of your transcript, namely, what courses you have taken. Do you have a good college background in economics and statistics? Have you done some independent research or policy analysis? It's important that you have a high quantitative GRE, but your courses will matter as well.
  • bosoxfanatic245bosoxfanatic245 Posts: 7Registered User New Member
    Another update - accepted into George Washington's MPA program. Waiting on 6 more schools.
  • mever12mever12 Posts: 8Registered User New Member
    What programs did you apply to besides George Washington and American?
  • bosoxfanatic245bosoxfanatic245 Posts: 7Registered User New Member
    Berkeley, Syracuse, Harvard, Princeton, UNC, and Maryland
  • sashmppsashmpp Posts: 3Registered User New Member
    Hi all,

    I just started hearing back from schools and am wondering if there are any other reputable sources besides U.S. News and World Report for rankings/ratings?

    Just heard back and was accepted to CMU Heinz (MPP) and Syracuse Maxwell (MPA) today. Have yet to hear back from any other schools...

    Any information on CMU and Syracuse would be greatly appreciated!

    Thanks!
  • bosoxfanatic245bosoxfanatic245 Posts: 7Registered User New Member
    I don't know of any other sources besides U.S. News. Maxwell has been ranked #1 by them for several years in a row.
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